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Kiss Me, Stupid (1964)

7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 4,162 users   Metascore: 63/100
Reviews: 58 user | 36 critic | 6 from Metacritic.com

A jealous piano teacher Orville Spooner sends his beautiful wife, Zelda, away for the night while he tries to sell a song to a famous nightclub singer Dino, who is stranded in town.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Kiss Me, Stupid (1964)

Kiss Me, Stupid (1964) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Barney
Barbara Pepper ...
Skip Ward ...
Milkman (as James Ward)
Doro Merande ...
Mrs. Pettibone
Bobo Lewis ...
Waitress
Tom Nolan ...
Johnnie Mulligan (as Tommy Nolan)
Alice Pearce ...
Mrs. Mulligan
...
Rev. Carruthers
Arlen Stuart ...
Rosalie Schultz
...
Mr. Pettibone
Cliff Norton ...
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Storyline

Dino, the charming and lecherous Las Vegas singer, stops for gas on his way to Hollywood in Climax, Nevada. The oily gas station attendant is Barney Millsap, a would-be lyricist who writes pop songs with Orville Spooner, the local piano teacher. By disabling Dino's car, Barney contrives a scheme to have Dino sing one of their songs on an upcoming TV special. To entertain Dino, Barney contacts the village tart, Polly, employing her to pretend to be Orville's wife, Zelda, for a night. She doesn't like Dino, but does love being Orville's surrogate wife. Dino goes to a bar, where he meets the real Zelda, and they spend the night together while Polly spends it with Orville. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1964 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Kiss Me, Stupid  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Zelda was originally written for Marilyn Monroe. See more »

Goofs

After Orville's wife digs under his sweatshirt for a pen while Johnny is playing the piano, the sound of the piano distorts as if the sound tape slowed down for a second. See more »

Quotes

Dino: [on a cabaret stage, pretending to be drunk] I have an amazing mother, you know. She is 85 years old and she don't need no glasses.
[pauses]
Dino: She drinks right out of the bottle.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cinemania (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm a Poached Egg
(uncredited)
Music by George Gershwin
Lyrics by Ira Gershwin
Sung by Cliff Osmond and Ian Freebairn-Smith
(P) 1964
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Unjustly Maligned-Not Great but Far From a Disaster
1 December 1999 | by (Atlanta, GA) – See all my reviews

Billy Wilder's career as a hitmaker ended with this for-its-time smutty sex comedy, yet it shows all of the flaws and strengths that once made him one of Hollywood's top directors and, for all its sexual innuendo, is really a very sweet film. Although Ray Walston is terribly miscast as small-town songwriter Orville J. Spooner, who hires a local prostitute (Kim Novak) to impersonate his wife (Felicia Farr) so he can use her to sell singing star Dino (Dean Martin) his songs, the other three stars are dynamite. Farr displays a crack sense of comic timing. Martin, one of Hollywood's most underrated actors, is dead on in a parody of his own image. And Novak gives the performance of her career as the romantic small-town slut trying to earn enough money to get her trailer out of the desert.

As with most of Wilder's films, all the cynicism and sex play mask a romantic heart: Polly and Orville begin to believe in her masquerade as his wife, until he kicks Dino out to protect her honor. The two develop a genuine affection for each other that transcends their brief sexual encounter.

At the time of its release, it was a major scandal, condemned by the Legion of Decency and disowned by United Artists. Now, it seems less shocking and ranks among the second tier of Billy Wilder's work. It's hardly as good as "Some Like It Hot" or "Sunset Boulevard," but never descends to the shoddiness of "The Front Page."


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